Upon arrival, we were greated by a nice Vietnamese gentleman holding up a sign saying “Adriana Selage”. It was 6am, and at this point, neither of us had slept well in the past two days, one of them because it was spent on Vietnam Airlines.
The driver dropped of us on the side of the road in the Old Quarter, where we were greeted by a couple other men, who took our luggage and escorted us down a small side street, to our hotel.
Our rooms were not ready at this early hour, but the hotel kindly offered to make us at home with a lovely breakfast – while western options were available, both of us were happy to start our day with Pho Ga, the traditional breakfast of the locals.
After a nap and shower, we were hungry once again (perhaps we would see Vietnam through the local food instead of the sights?). We were eager to find a
good place for the Northern Vietnamese Speciality, bún chả. Bún chả is a mixture of mini pork kebabs and slicess, barbecued over coals and served with rice noodles, greens, chilli, garlic and a sweet dipping sauce.
We spent the remainder of the afternoon sauntering through the town and making our way to see the key sights. Along the way, we found a nice coffee shop on the lake for some vietnamese coffee – a coffee costing more than our entire Bun Cha meal, but the view was worth it. While we mastered the art of crossing the street like the locals – having to step out in front of cars and motorcycles, making as assumption they will stop is the only way to get anywhere – we still gave in to a tourist trap and agreed to a cyclo driver for a short ride.
Eventually, we found ourselves back in the Old Quarter. We got manicures, stopped by the hotel, and then continued out for an amazing BBQ dinner, followed by a quick visit to the night market.